Event: Blue-Gold Scrimmage
Where: Aggie Stadium
When: Friday at 7 p.m.
Who to watch: Offensive tackle Mark Tos, a two-time All-Great West Conference selection, has been named a preseason All-American by both Phil Steele’s College Football Preview and The Sports Network, headlining a number of UC Davis football players to receive distinction heading into the 2010 campaign.
The senior from Hanford, Calif. was selected to the all-conference first team by the league’s coaches last season after aiding the Aggies in their first conference championship since 2005.
“Tos is our rock at right tackle,” said head coach Bob Biggs. “He’s been a very steady player for us and he deserves the accolades he got in the preseason. Now he needs to go out and perform consistently at that level.”
Preview: Anticipation for the new season is high in the Aggies’ camp.
After finishing with a 6-5 overall record (3-1 in league) and capturing their first-ever conference championship in the 2009 campaign, the Aggies are ready for the 2010 season.
UC Davis has scheduled several large conference matchups and have officially named Randy Wright as the new starting quarterback for the upcoming season.
“Randy at this time gives us the best chance to win,” Biggs said. “He understands the responsibility of being a starter, and now we need to do everything we can to get him prepared.”
Biggs, who is entering his 18th season with the program, also emphasized the significance of the 11 players that were selected as preseason all-Americans.
Along with Tos, offensive tackle Sean Davies, tight end Dean Rogers and defensive end Eric Sobotka were first team picks.
Second team selections include wide receiver Sean Creadick, running back Joe Trombetta, guard Ray Wilburn, linebacker Dozie Amajoyi, safety Daniel Hart, punter Colton Schmidt, and defensive tackles Jacob Maxson and Andrew Benjamin.
Biggs says the fact that so many players received such honors gives the team credence to last year’s championship season and all of its accomplishments.
It also adds to the Aggies’ enthusiasm as the new season approaches.
“Everybody is anticipating all the players being here and the excitement of getting started and looking forward to the schedule,” Biggs said. “There’s just a sense of optimism and a sense of expectation and excitement.”
This year the Aggies will face a challenge in their schedule, playing four road games over the first five weeks – including the season debut at Cal on Sept. 4 – before returning to Aggie Stadium to play four of their last six games at home.
The regular season will end with a pair of rivalry matchups against Cal Poly and Sacramento State. UC Davis ended a three-game losing streak to the Mustangs with a win at home last November and will seek revenge against the Hornets, who have won the past two Causeway Classic games.
“Each and every year the schedules seem to get more and more challenging but I think our program is moving forward too,” Biggs said. “We continue to want to play as challenging a schedule as we can.”
The squad has worked through preseason training in preparation for its annual Blue-Gold Scrimmage on Friday before it fully turns its attention to the season opener against Cal.
“The players have worked extremely hard and they’re fighting through these tough practices,” Biggs said. “The scrimmage is the final warm up before Cal, and we want to simulate the speed that they’ll see in their first game.”
– Grace Sprague